Five Reasons to Choose the University of Buffalo
March 6, 2017
If you’re considering a spatial career and wondering where you might find a strong geography program, I would urge you to take a very close look at the University of Buffalo. Buffalo has been a leading geography department for many years and continues to provide an innovative and rigorous analytical approach to geography education.
Last week I was fortunate enough to visit the geography department at “UB” and speak to the department’s faculty and graduate students about spatial careers as part of their Colloquium Series. I had a delightful time touring department facilities, meeting faculty and spending time with a terrific group of graduate students.
Here are 5 reason to choose the University of Buffalo:
- Curriculum is well balanced with faculty expertise and required coursework in human geography, physical geography and geographic techniques (GIS, spatial statistics, visualization). Learning to think spatially comes from understanding of both human and physical processes shaping the earth’s surface along with the ability to analyze and visualize spatial data.
- Top notch faculty has strong spatial expertise. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more distinguished faculty for spatial-related studies. Check out (in alphabetical order): Jared Aldstadt, Ling Bian, Geoffrey Jacquez, Peter Rogerson, Monica Stephens, Adam Wilson and Eun-Hye Enki Yoo for an all star line-up of potential grad school advisors.
- Home to one of three National Centers for Geographical Information and Analysis (NCGIA) along with unique offerings in International Trade and Health Geography.
- Buffalo is a cool city and, like many recovering rust belt cities, is undergoing an urban renaissance of sorts after decades of decline. It’s also an affordable place to live. The weather sucks but you’ll be studying anyway, right?
- Department has strong sense of collegiality among faculty and graduate students. Friendly places are better learning environments… and more fun.
Here’s a gif from my dinner out with a great group of graduate students (click on the image to load animation). Good times…except for the collective disappointment when Sarah didn’t finish her rice. 😉
Also, UB, where I picked up my BA in Geography, is the only program I find in your annual rankings that is strong in spatial and has a suburban campus, AFAIK. I keep searching for alternatives, but unless I’m overlooking something I haven’t found any others.
Not exactly sure what might qualify as a suburban campus for you but I can think of many programs in smaller cities like Buffalo. Perhaps you could clarify?
Thank you so much for all the information and I thoroughly enjoy your blog!
One more thing, recently I have been admitted to the GIS Master program in both UB and Clark, but I am not sure which one I should choose. I tend to UB for the professors there, but its location and climate are my concerns. And Clark awarded me scholarship (equally 40% of the tuition fee). Can you give me some advice?
Congratulations on admission to two outstanding programs! Tough decision. I won’t be much help I’m afraid.
I don’t think the climate in Worcester would be a whole lot better than in Buffalo, so I’d probably take that out of the equation. Proximity to Boston is an advantage for Clark but not sure that’s enough to move the needle. Toronto isn’t far from Buffalo. A lot depends on your career objectives. Is one a lot less expensive than the other? Have you contacted Buffalo to see if they’d be willing to match your scholarship offer? Might be worth a try.
In any case, I don’t think you can go wrong here. Try this. Ask yourself, where do you think you’d be happier? Then choose that one. Or flip a coin. 🙂 Good luck!